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Phl shooters aim to end drought

HANGZHOU, China — Led by Olympians Jayson Valdez and Paul Bryan Rosario, the Philippine national shooting team is aiming to end its long wait for a gold medal in the 19th Asian Games.

Valdez and Rosario will be accompanied by veterans Amparo Teresa Acuna, Hagen Topacio, Joaquin Miguel Ancheta, Franchette Shayne Quiroz and rookie Enrique Enriquez in their bid to return to the gold-medal podium after 65 years.

The last time Team Philippines struck gold in shooting was in 1958 Tokyo when Martin Gison ruled the men’s air rifle open and Adolfo Feliciano topped the men’s small bore rifle 3 positions.

“This is the crème dela crème of Philippine shooting. Expect some nice performance from these two,’’ said Philippine National Shooting Association secretary general Iryne Garcia, referring to Valdez and Rosario.

“We also have rookie Enrique who is currently doing well and pistol shooter Franchette. We’re expecting to give it a little push,’’ added Garcia, who arrived Friday with the team at the Athletes Village here.

Rosario, who saw action in the 2012 London Olympics, is entired in the men’s skeet while Valdez, a 2020 Tokyo Olympian, will try his hand in the men’s 10m air rifle, 50m rifle 3 positions and air rifle mixed team.

Also joining the team are 2008 Beijing Olympian Eric Ang (men’s trap and trap team), Carlos Carag (men’s trap and trap team) and Elvie Baldivino (women’s 10m air pistol and 25m pistol).

Topacio will also compete in the men’s trap, Enriquez in the men’s skeet along with Ancheta and Quiroz has been lined up in the women’s 10m air pistol.

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